Nursing, M.S.

Increase your professional opportunities and become a leader in your field.

Students in the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program at Lewis University learn how to design and execute complex healthcare strategies for a rapidly changing healthcare environment, allowing them to take the next step in their career.

Registered Nurses Accelerate their MSN

Lewis offers RN-MSN options for practicing nurses to expedite their MSN degree. Interested students should contact a Graduate Admission Advisor at grad@lewisu.edu or (815) 836-5610 to determine which prerequisite coursework (if any) is required for enrollment.

Specialization Options Based on Career Goals

  • Nursing Education – Become a nurse educator within an academic, healthcare or community setting. Develop skills in curriculum design, instructional methodology, program evaluation and educational research. Also available online.

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  • Healthcare Systems Leadership - Lead the administration of nursing and patient care services, improving the delivery of healthcare and nursing at large. Develop skills in finance, economics, human resources and organizational management. Also available online.

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  • Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner – Prepare to provide direct management of acutely ill patients in collaboration with physicians and other members of the healthcare team. Develop analytical skills in biostatistics and informatics, and an understanding of the epidemiology and nursing management in special populations.

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  • Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner – Prepare to provide primary healthcare for adolescents and adults in a wide variety of settings, possessing advanced skills in patient education, health promotion, diagnostics, testing and disease prevention.

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  • Adult Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist – Prepare to implement the teaching, mentoring, consulting, research, management and systems improvement roles of the clinical nurse specialist.

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  • Family Nurse Practitioner – Prepare to provide primary health care for infants, children, adolescents, adults and women in a wide variety of settings. Develop advanced skills in patient education, health promotion, diagnostics, testing and disease prevention.

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  • School Nurse – Prepare to serve in the field of education and nursing, provide leadership in advancing school nursing, apply advanced nursing theory to improve school wellness and identify concerns that interfere with students’ learning.

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These specializations within the MSN degree are also available as certificates and non-degree programs. Visit the Post-Master’s Nursing Certificates page for more information.

The Master of Science in Nursing program is accredited by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (CCNE).

Financial Aid Options

In addition to a competitive cost of tuition, Lewis offers various opportunities for discounts and scholarships for students who qualify.
  • Employer Tuition AssistancePresence, Vanguard, Copley, Advocate, Provena Alverno and other partner healthcare organization employees may take advantage of special tuition pricing.
  • Illinois Organization of Nurse Leaders (IONL) Discount - Through partnership with the IONL, eligible students can earn a 15% tuition discount towards their degree. Students who are IONL members must submit the necessary forms each semester.
  • Frequent Flyer Scholarship – Lewis University alumni qualify for a 20% tuition scholarship when admitted into a graduate degree, doctoral degree, second bachelor degree, or qualifying certificate program. More information about the Frequent Flyer Scholarship Program.
Please refer to the Financial Aid Office for more information on types of aid and tuition assistance.

Sample Courses:

  • Applied Biostatistics for Advanced Nursing Practice
  • Healthcare Organizations, Systems and Policy
  • Theoretical Basis for Advanced Nursing Practice
  • Population Health
  • Healthcare Informatics

Admission Requirements

  • Application Deadlines:
    • Application submission deadline for Fall enrollment is April 2
    • Application submission deadline for Spring enrollment is October 1
  • Admission to the graduate program leading to the Master of Science in Nursing is based on individual qualifications of the applicant, without regard to race, color, religion, age, gender, national or ethnic origin, or disability.
  • In addition to meeting health and clinical requirements in the MSN program prior to enrollment in clinical/practicum courses, all incoming students born after January 1, 1957 who are taking six (6) or more credit hours per semester on the Romeoville campus must have an updated immunization record sent to the Center for Health and Counseling Services.
  • Requests for exceptions to any of the stated admission criteria must be submitted in writing to the Director of Graduate Studies and will be considered on an individual basis.
Admission Requirements for Applicants to the Healthcare Systems Leadership, Nursing Education and School Nurse programs with a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing:
  • Graduation from a baccalaureate nursing program, accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Current licensure as a Registered Nurse (RN) in Illinois or state/country of practice
  • Official transcripts from all institutions previously attended
    • Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA from ADN degree if applicable
    • Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA from BSN degree; OR
    • Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA from post BSN, graduate level coursework of no less than 6 credit hours; OR
    • Minimum of 3.0 cumulative GPA from MSN and post-MSN coursework for entry into post-MSN, programs.
  • Successful completion of a Statistics course and Nursing Research course
    • Equivalent courses must be taken prior to or concurrent with the first graduate-level nursing course with a grade “B” or above. If a student does not receive a grade of “B” or above in a bridge course, the student may not repeat the course and will be dismissed from the program.
  • Two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions' recommendation forms
    • One reference must be from a nurse with a master's degree or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying
    • One reference should be from your current supervisor or manager
    • Letters from persons deemed to have a conflict of interest will not be accepted, e.g. relatives or persons in a reporting position to the applicant.
  • A current resume or curriculum vitae
  • Essay (500 words) addressing the following:
    • How your work experiences prepared you for graduate studies
    • How graduate study will facilitate achievement of your short and long term goals
    • How the Lewis University Mission integrates with your personal and professional identity
  • For candidates for the School Nurse program:
    • NOTE: Passing the Basic Skills test is required by the state of Illinois before entering the School Nurse internship. We strongly recommend that students consider completing this requirement as quickly as possible. Students must also successfully pass the ISBE Content Area test in School Nursing (182) The tests that meet the Basic Skills requirement are the following:
      • Test of Academic Proficiency
      • Score of 22 or higher on the ACT plus a minimum score of 6 on the Writing Exam
      • Score of 1110 or higher on the SAT (evidence-based reading and writing + mathematics = 1110 or higher) and a minimum score of 26 on the writing and language
  • Fingerprint Background Checks - Licensure from the ISBE may be denied for the presence of certain felonies on a candidate's criminal record. Candidates are encouraged to review the licensure requirements (105 ILCS 5/21-23a).
    • The College of Nursing and Health Professions maintains a relationship with a vendor for the convenience of candidates. Candidates will be given information during orientation and will complete the background check in advance of their first field experience.
    • Candidates will be required to submit a hard copy to the School Nurse Program.
    • Candidates who have concerns about their past criminal record should seek counsel through the School Nurse Program Coordinator.
    • A second fingerprint check may be required by the school district(s) at the time of school nurse internship.
    • Candidates will be required to incur the costs for all fingerprint background checks.
  • Admission Requirements for Applicants to the Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist, and Family Nurse Practitioner programs with a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing:
    • Graduation from a baccalaureate nursing program, accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Current licensure as a Registered Nurse (RN) in Illinois or state/country of practice
    • Official transcripts from all institutions previously attended
      • Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA from ADN degree if applicable
      • Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA from BSN degree; OR
      • Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA from post BSN, graduate level coursework of no less than 6 credit hours; OR
      • Minimum of 3.0 cumulative GPA from MSN and post-MSN coursework for entry into post-MSN, programs.
    • Successful completion of a Statistics course and Nursing Research course
      • Equivalent courses must be taken prior to or concurrent with the first graduate-level nursing course with a grade “B” or above.
      • If a student does not receive a grade of “B” or above in a bridge course, the student may not repeat the course and will be dismissed from the program.
    • Two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions' recommendation forms
      • One reference must be from a nurse with a master's degree or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying
      • One reference should be from your current supervisor or manager
    Admission Requirements for Applicants with a Registered Nurse License and a Non-Nursing Bachelor’s Degree:
    • Meet all the admission requirements for the desired specialization/course track as listed above (except the B.S. in Nursing requirement).
      • If not, equivalent coursework must be taken prior to or concurrent with the first graduate-level nursing course
    • Graduation from a state-approved associate degree (ADN) program
      • Minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) required
    • Graduation from a state-approved non-nursing baccalaureate degree program
      • Minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) required
    • Successful completion of the following bridge courses with a grade of “B” or above. If a student does not receive a grade of “B” or above in a bridge course, the student may not repeat the course and will be dismissed from the program:
      • Statistics course (3 credit hours)
      • Concepts of Professional Nursing course - 4 credit hours (NURS 30600 in the Lewis University RN/BSN program)
      • Evidence Based Practice course - 3 credit hours (NURS 30100 in the Lewis University RN/BSN program)
      • Promoting Healthy Communities course - 5 credit hours (NURS 43200 in the Lewis University RN/BSN program)

    More details for specific admission requirements can be found in the MSN course catalog.

    Please refer to the Office of Graduate Admissions for application requirements and specific next steps.

    VIEW THE PROGRAM CURRICULUM

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